Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Getting around St.Petersburg

Today I had to meet someone in the metro to hand over some documents. It’s a pretty standard procedure. We arranged to meet downstairs in the metro so as not to go outside and come back in again. I was standing in the vestibule in-between two escalators which headed off toward various exits or line changes.

Pretty soon, an old lady approached and asked me which way to go. I pointed to the right. After that a man came and asked where to go. I pointed in the other direction. After about five people asked me for directions, I was already starting to laugh. Why did they pick me? I was wearing glasses…maybe they made me look smarter?

In a 10-minute period, I think 10 people asked me for directions. I had a steady stream of customers.

Lady: “Which way is __________?”
Me: “This way.”

Man: “How do I get to ____________ station?”
Me: “That way.”

Man: “Where is ________________ street?”
Me: “That way.”
Man: “Is it far?”
Me: “No.”
Man: “Which way when I get out of the metro?”
Me: “Right.”

Lady: “Which way is ____________________?”
Me: “Do you want _____________ or _____________?”
Lady: “I need the ______________ store.”
Me: “That way.”

I suddenly had this feeling that in the midst of helping people get oriented, maybe I was lost myself?

When I had a break from telling people where to go, I called the girl I was supposed to be meeting.

“Liz, I’m sorry! I totally forgot! Can we do it another day?”

I got back on the metro and headed home.

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